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The Fruit

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The Fruit

The Fruit

The Fruit

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Glynn's roommate Paul sees no boundaries in life. And that's exactly what will lead to his certain demise.

GLYNN WASHINGTON, HOST:

OK, so my roommate Paul and I, we just moved to a house in Detroit, Michigan. Now Paul - Paul; there's lots to be said about Paul. But for now, I'm just going to mark that he's an accomplished, fairly good-looking white guy. He's intense. He's always thinking these thoughts like, the Constitution only applies to the first 13 states. Or, 95 percent of the universe is dark matter and nobody knows what the rest of it's made of.

That's just the way he is. And because Paul is interested in everything, it surprises me not in the least when I arrive home one day to find him watching a TV show featuring Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam. What Paul finds personally appealing about Farrakhan's message of black empowerment, I do not know, but then - it's Paul. And Paul is really digging on this show. He's clapping and cheering - that's right Louis, that's right. Then I hear the shouting.

I run out, what's the problem?

Farrakhan just said that black women shouldn't date white dudes. He said it's an abomination.

Calm down. People say stuff on TV.

But, what if I want to talk to one of these sisters?

Brother, it's your lucky day - we live in Detroit. There's plenty to choose from and Farrakhan doesn't run this.

I see him - he's fuming, right? Whatever. I figure in a few days he'll forget all about it. But he doesn't forget. He keeps talking about how Louis Farrakhan let him down. How it's not right that the Nation of Islam, the Detroit chapter founded by one Malcolm X, isn't cool with equal opportunity getting down. Paul, it does not matter; it doesn't matter. He will not listen.

And one day we're driving down the street, about to pick up some barbecue, when we see eight or nine Nation of Islam fellas. They're clean-shaven, pressed suit, bow-tied, no-nonsense serious-about-their-business brothers, walking down the street. And Paul pulls over the car and he's like, I'm going to go talk to them about this thing with black women. And this right here; this here is where I put my foot down. Are you crazy? That's the Fruit. You don't go messing with the Fruit. What's wrong with you?

Huh? What's the Fruit?

The Fruit of Islam are the paramilitary arm of the Nation of Islam, the brothers that don't play. Black nationalists are scared of them. Let it go, Paul.

I'm just going to go talk to them.

Don't do it Paul, let it go.

Paul opens the door, strolls over to the fellas. And it's the end of the line time for my man Paul. I lean way down in the car so no one mistakes me as being with this crazy person and I wait for the unfortunate tragedy to unfold. It shouldn't take long.

I ease my head up to window level, only to see Paul hanging with the Fruit of Islam, everybody joking and laughing.

He's like, all right - later on, fellas. He gets back in the car, all smiles.

What'd they say?

I convinced them.

You convinced them?

Yup.

He pulls out into traffic, he pauses and he looks at me serious.

Yeah, but, we should probably lay off the pork.

Today on SNAP JUDGMENT we proudly present "End Of The Line," amazing stories from real people, pushing past their own point of no return. My name is Glynn Washington. Please, make sure your emergency information is in order because this is SNAP JUDGMENT.

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